We want to share some personal stories with you, stories of moments, encounters and places that reminded us again of the incredible beauty of nature. In everyday life, we often forget about all the amazing things out there. But then again there are moments that leave us totally amazed, and those are the moments we need to keep in mind. They are important, because experiencing the beauty of nature reminds us of why we have to do everything we can to save this planet, to stop doing harm to the nature and to drastically decrease all the pollution. Here are our moments..
I had such a moment on my last trip to South Africa and Namibia and even though I travelled through amazing landscapes, saw great cities and surfed beautiful waves, there was something else that impressed me even more. It was all those wild animals, many of them endangered, that I saw an that trip. How peaceful they were, how majestic and how incredibly beautiful. There was that specific moment, where I realised it most. It was far up in Etosha, in northern Namibia. We had already seen Zebras, Giraffes, Elephants, Lions,… but we hadn’t seen a Rhino yet. One of the most endangered animals in Namibia and still target of ruthless poachers. Just a day before we heard about four Chinese guys arrested with 14 Rhino horns. Awful! We had almost given up hopes, but on our last evening in the park we were sitting by a waterhole with a glass of wine, talking about the animals we saw but also how sad it was that we couldn’t see that Rhino. And then, suddenly, something big came trotting towards the waterhole. The sun was setting down, and there it was – the Rhino! All other animals stopped moving, there was a profound silence around the place. The Rhino just slowly walked towards the water, scratching its horn on a tree on the way, totally relaxed. We stayed there over an hour, watching this majestic animal and the peaceful atmosphere around that waterhole. It was amazing to see this animal but also the general fact how slow and peaceful this world can still be sometimes, where there is no human being interfering. This moment really reminded me of the beauty of nature, why we have to give everything to protect it rather than continuing the destruction of this planet.
As an ocean lover Morocco didn’t spring immediately up to my mind when it comes to beach destinations. If you yearn for European beaches, go to France, Portugal or Italy and if coconuts are your thing then try Indonesia or Sri Lanka. But if you fancy something a little different, long empty ocean roads and secluded coves all to yourself and aren’t bothered about frills and luxury then please give Moroccan coast a go. For me this is a country filled with beautiful hidden gems and Legzira Beach is undoubtedly a part of this collection. Legzira beach is often seen as one of the most beautiful stretches of sand in all of Africa, mainly due to its two formidable sedimentary rock arches, formed by years of erosion from the pounding sea. But unfortunately one of them collapsed recently on Friday the 23rd of September 2016. A massive pile of red rubble now sits where this famous archway used to stand, dominating the popular beach near Sidi Ifni, South of Agadir. It is not known what caused the collapse yet, but the movement of the sea could be a factor. With all love I would like to share this stunning photo taken by Marie last year at Legzira Beach. Me doing a sunset yoga when the rock turned into this stunning glowing red colour. Beautiful moments and cherished memories.
I already had lots of beautiful magical moments in and with mother nature. I saw hawks drying their wings in the sunrise on a beautiful cactus in Mexico, unbelievably colourful birds in the mangrove jungel working as a SUP Instructor, surfed with dolphins, swam in ocean lights during fullmoon on Sylt and felt like on another planet far away out of time and space in the middle of this glittering water. Amazing. Just you, the light, the ocean. I had lots of those unique moments. But all of my most beautiful moments were with whales. I love those huge but at the same time light and smooth animals. They remind me of dinosaurs but they are so peaceful and relaxed in their way. When I lived in Mexico we had a mom with their little baby in the bay for three weeks. I saw them every day. When I taught yoga they jumped out of the water in front of our class, when I went running I saw them on the horizon. On SUP tours we met them and the most amazing moment was listening the sound under water when we went snorkeling. I never felt so connected with nature. Listening to the sounds of those giants which were so different. This relaxing sound was like a nice song which is their language. Whales can communicate in such an amazing way. They can connect theirselves with whales on the other side oft he world. They are just different and special for me. It is super interesting on an energtical leveI cause they work with such a big aura and every whale is unique like we humans are. I am not sure if whales know about their chakras and aura but i feel how great and big an aura of a whale could be. I also snorkeld with a sharkwhale. I felt so small and helpless next to 3 big huge whales. They where so calm and seemed so happy and satisfied, so in their inner trust. I can´t explain in words how amazing it is for me to feel the power of this specie. But once you feel connected with them you really know what I mean.
I just want to remind everybody to respect our nature. In Costa Rica I learned more and more about nature and how people just live this simple but protective lfestyle in caring about nature. So why don´t you organise a beach clean up on your next surf trip and share this one with us?
One hour of beach clean up could rescue a lots of life in our beautiful still unknown under water world. The ocean is poluted with plastic. So please make sure not to waste and use so much plastic. All the animals out there will thank you and every little step is helpful.
We finally arrived to the entrance of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area welcomed by a ranger who would show us around for the next couple of hours. Not being convinced of the concept of Safaris, I entered with mixed feelings – until we arrived to the edge of the Ngorongoro Crater with the most picturesque and pure scene I have probably ever seen. It somewhat looked like an autarkic bubble, unexposed to the reality of the outside world: a hidden paradise, an intact eco-system almost untouched by the human race. Who are we, trying to dominate nature, trying to have total control, interfere and destroy to please our ambitions? Wild animals were passing by, elegantly and full of pride. In the distance we saw Maasai tending a flock of goats – I felt pure admiration for their respect for nature and their way of adjusting their habits and lives to the conditions of the environment. And there I was: with a messed up carbon-footprint of a traveller, using materials day-in day-out which were produced on the other side of the world in a most likely polluting process. I felt ashamed and guilty. Who am I being allowed to admire that place but at the same time actively destroying it? I have not become an eco-revolutionist afterwards, yet I do always wonder what effect it has on the environment when buying a new camera, a new surfboard, another flight ticket to the other side of the world… and sometimes I succeed and resist. Imagine a carbon-footprint scale for every purchasable item indicating the impact number next to the price. Would we become carbon-footprint sensible instead of price sensible? Would you?
I have been traveling a lot in the last few years and have seen countless breath-taking places – abandoned beaches, incredible volcano views, crystal clear waters, but there is this one moment that I will never forget. I was doing a roadtrip through Spain and some people along the way recommended us to go to ‘Playa de Vegas’, a beach in Asturias. When we arrived we found a place that was covered in golden dust, along with lush green hills. I was so amazed by the beauty of this place that I couldn’t stop starring at the scenery in front of us. It felt too surreal to be true. I grabbed my surfboard and run into the water, but I didn’t even bother to take waves and go surfing, I was just looking at the landscape and felt so much peace and joy in my heart. The next day the place was grey and foggy and it was raining non-stop. I don’t know if this place ever looked that magical again, but I know one thing for sure: Nature is magical! It gives us memories to remember, it gives us time to unwind from the daily routine, it gives us a feeling of freedom. We often sit in our office from dusk til down while nature is waiting for us… don’t be one of these fools, take at least your weekend and explore some corners of our beautiful planet!